|Peak:||Mt. Hope A (13er)|
|Route:||East Ridge via Sheep Gulch|
|Posted By:||Matt Lemke|
|Date of Information:||01/10/2012|
Climbed Mt. Hope yesterday via E Ridge from Sheep Gulch. Road all the way to Winfield still drivable by any car. Trail up to treeline in Sheep Gulch was packed snow except for area around treeline where we lost the trail a little and broke through 1-2 feet. Above treeline, 1-4 inches covers about 60% of the ground with many areas having a very hard, thin (1 in.) slab that sheared off very easily. We avoided these on the bigger slopes but crossing smaller slopes proved fine. Once on the E Ridge, there was a mixture of exposed rock, snow and rock with a little snow in between making travel a little difficult since your foot will occasionally sink down 3 feet into a gap in the rocks you couldn't see. The final climb to the summit plateau was steep and crampons/microspikes/axe were a must and I wore spikes from 500 feet below the summit, to the summit, all the way back down to the car.
Summit views towards the Ellingwood Ridge were stunning to say the least. Beautiful winter day! This currently is my favorite Sawatch summit I've done.